Alright, I'm a bit perplexed by Trancemission's latest and fifth album, Paranoia. Enough so, I can't conjure up a clever introduction to this review. I want to jump right into some commentary. Commentary that isn't all that flattering.
First off, I was put off at the very beginning of this album by some very weird shit. Der Holle Rache kocht in meinem Herzen. You know what that is? If you don't know German opera or Mozart, probably not. From Wikipedia: "Der Holle Rache kocht in meinem Herzen" ("Hell's vengeance boils in my heart") is the second aria sung by the Queen of the Night, a soprano coloratura part, in Mozart's opera The Magic Flute (Die Zauberflote). It is considered to be one of the most famous opera arias, highly memorable, fast paced and menacingly grandiose." Okay then. So what? This then leads into a song called, no surprise, Queen of the Night. It sounds like power metal mixed with that German opera and, well, circus music. Worse, it's got some German woman singing or yodeling or some such shit. Wow. Just shoot me. No. Somebody shoot her. And the male vocals sound like he should be singing along with a calliope. Weirdness. Nearly, hit the Stop button, weirdness.
And what's worse? I could not get the sound of that song nor the vocals out of my ears. Soon after, every song seemed to echo that theme of circus or carnival music. Bouncy, goofy, waiting for those clowns on the mini-bicyles to start appearing with the Chihuahuas with bow ties.
But here's the thing, what I hear is certainly not what Trancemission intended. Honestly, they were probably just trying to "think outside the box," be creative as it were. And that's hardly a bad thing. There are more than a few interesting melodic rock tunes here, only wrapped up in a catchy pop-like, nearly bubble gum pop, presentation. Like Killer, Make My Day, or Hey There Gipsies. Then there's more weirdness with Rockin' Is Ma Business, like Trancemission is working some "ghetto" groove into their vibe. But then there's the slick guitar solos permeating the latter half. Fundamentally, despite earlier comments, Paranoia probably needs, like three spins or more to be appreciated for it's creativity. Unfortunately, it ain't happening with me. That's not to say that you shouldn't give it a try.
Though Trancemission's Paranoia is probably best contemplated for it's creativity with several spins, I was basically put off at the start by the album's weirdness.
If anything can be said about founder and guitarist Michel St-Pere and his Mystery, he and the band are prolific in their output. If they're not offering consistent studio albums, the band delivers live CD/DVDs ... [ Read More ]